Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Aircrew Forums > Rotorheads
Reload this Page >

22 year old killed by tail rotor

Rotorheads A haven for helicopter professionals to discuss the things that affect them

22 year old killed by tail rotor

Old 26th Jul 2022, 22:55
  #41 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 559
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Originally Posted by havick View Post
Which helipad was it? If itís the one Iím thinking of then my experience there wasnít so great when I dropped in a couple months ago.
I believe it was just south of the town of Spata at 37.9469 N, 23.9033 E
helihub is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2022, 23:03
  #42 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: California
Posts: 602
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
Originally Posted by helihub View Post
and you don't know
  • if the passengers were clearly briefed before take-off in English
  • if the passengers ignored what they had been told, or didn't fully understand it
  • if the passengers were escorted from the aircraft on landing by ground crew
  • if signage for passengers was present and clear enough to read
  • if there was a reason the pilot did not shut down sooner
  • if the aircraft was fitted with a rotor brake, whether it was functional, and whether it was used or not
  • if the operator was following their own ops manual
  • if the ops manual was sufficient
  • if the heliport ops manual was being followed
  • if the heliport ops manual was sufficient
  • if there was any time pressure on anyone involved
  • if the sun was in an awkward direction for the deceased to be able to judge the height or distance of the tail rotor
  • if the AAIASB statement was based on observations by AAIASB personnel or a telephone call with the operator or something else
  • etc etc- so many things to think about
and thus you can't point a finger at the deceased for not being "bothered to pay attention".
​​​​​​Based on what I got from the report, he walked into the tail rotor, it did not swing around and hit him. He's 22, not 12.
Robbiee is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2022, 23:13
  #43 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Parts Unknown
Posts: 193
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
An interesting and tragic thread.

I have read reports that the young man got out of the aircraft and immediately walked towards the spinning tail rotor. Not credible in my opinion.

I have read (many) reports that he left the helicopter, went to the terminal, then ran back for a selfie whilst people were telling him not to ( lots of corroboration of this). Absolutely believable of a rich young kid.

Regardless, the fact is that no law can fully legislate for stupidity, ignorance, or ego.

Given the subjectís background I suspect he thought he knew better, ignored the warnings from the Ďplebs, and got the inevitable result. In fact I bet that is what happened.

Do I know that for a fact? No, I was not there.

But I bet I am right.


Baldeep Inminj is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2022, 23:19
  #44 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: uk
Posts: 20
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I got a job as a helicopter ops assistant at the Open at Turnberry a good few years ago. There were about 10 of us and 5 landing pads. As there was a fast turn around of flights the rotors were not stopped. Our jobs were to open the doors once the chopper had landed and guide the pax away from the rear rotor and to the front of the bird. Amazing the number of people who exited and immediately tried to walk backwards towards the tail rotor. I thought it was a legal requirement to have operators to carry out the duties we did if the rotor was still running. Some reports state he ran back from the terminall to take a selfie.
MichaelOLearyGenius is offline  
Old 26th Jul 2022, 23:51
  #45 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 559
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Originally Posted by Robbiee View Post
​​​​​​Based on what I got from the report, he walked into the tail rotor, it did not swing around and hit him. He's 22, not 12.
As mentioned above, there are two reports which conflict with each other so you cannot rely on either. Sometimes there's a simple explanation of what happened in an accident, but often there is not. That's why investigations take time. No stone must be left unturned, lessons need to be learned, opportunities for improvement addressed and so on.
helihub is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 00:23
  #46 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: USA
Posts: 239
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Originally Posted by Jim59 View Post
Why don't they fit safety guards around the tail fan to prevent such accidents? Helicopters often embark/disembark passengers with rotors revolving so are a greater risk to passengesr than most fixed wing aircraft.
There are shrouded fans/rotors which are serious structural items. A basic wire guard carries the risk of coming loose or becoming snagged and destroying the tail rotor in flight, which seems like a far greater risk simply from the relative proportion of time in the air vs time near people on the ground.

It's very difficult to determine an engineering fix for a rare situation where the fix doesn't have its own risks.

The full solution would be NOTAR, but I expect that has cost/performance issues vs tail rotors.

So horrible for the family and the helicopter operators.

I think there have been far more people injured or killed by fixed wing propeller accidents - but that might simply be the relative proportion of fixed wing to rotary wing.
MechEngr is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 01:22
  #47 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: East side of OZ
Posts: 621
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts

He obviously hadn't seen this.
Bullethead is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 01:23
  #48 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2022
Location: Up Narf
Posts: 123
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
There is a safe zone to exit a rotors running Helo (bar a Wokka and that is a military event). The operator is at fault from not controlling the idiot in the safety zones of the airframe. But if he forced himselt into the danger zones of a rotary, the darwin law is applied, The daily mail should report the objective points that the bloke was stupid and paid the consequence of being a complete dick.
Diff Tail Shim is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 01:44
  #49 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2022
Location: Up Narf
Posts: 123
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
[QUOTE=ericferret;11268146]
Originally Posted by Ascend Charlie View Post
You can't TELL a milennial anything, and taking a selfie for Instagram is far more important than listening to anything the pilot said.

" No way they could charge the pilot for somebody else's stupidity."

It's Greece.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...-flip-a-switch
Alan Irwin never set the switch or failed to reset it. I did work with the guy that did touch it.
Diff Tail Shim is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 03:33
  #50 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: N/A
Posts: 4,767
Likes: 0
Received 5 Likes on 3 Posts
Used to operate into a casino back in the seventies where there was no ground handling staff, pax were off loaded/on loaded by the pilot after locking down the controls, engine at idle, driving a 206 one day helping a pax out of the left rear seat and saw a chap walking towards the aircraft from the six o'clock position directly towards the tail rotor, ran and stopped him about six feet from the guillotine.

Another occasion at the same pad saw a woman walk from the seven o'clock position of a running Bell 47, duck under the tail boom forward of the tail rotor to talk to the pilot, she made it in one piece.
megan is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 03:56
  #51 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Downeast
Age: 74
Posts: 17,657
Received 25 Likes on 19 Posts
Bullethead beat me to it....that is some "Soldier Humor" in the day.
SASless is online now  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 04:17
  #52 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 227
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It's said that no safety instructions were given to the pax upon landing and they exited the 407 by themselves. None had reached the lounge when it happened. The deceased went to the rear of the aircraft on his own as the others shouted for him to stop.

https://www.news.com.au/travel/trave...2f19c3790c1689

It would be an interesting discussion about shrouded tail rotors or ducted anti-torque systems being mandated for much-increased safety, but I guess it does not happen often enough like car accidents do to force such a thing. And as someone else stated, airplanes have much more riskier placements of open propellers near doors.

Can there be any way of integrating a very tiny, bright LED light into the tip of tail rotor rotor blades, lowered by a similarly tiny battery perhaps? I remember seeing a few photos of helicopters at night with lights in their blades. It may help make the spinning disc more visually evident. And hopefully not upset any balance.
Tickle is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 04:59
  #53 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: USA
Posts: 239
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
There are persistence of vision (POV) video displays that use a linear array of LEDs that light the entire circular path they take. It would be (technology wise) easy to add this to the rotor to display a "STAY BACK" or other messages along with video clips of possible results, but that may not be enough if the approach angle is small enough. The tough part is ensuring they all stay in place during rain, bugs, light hail, cold weather, hot weather, and whatever insults a ground crew might bring in cleaning the unit. All the display would require is a power supply through a slip ring, though the wiring to the blade(s) does have to follow the linkage to the blades - the controller and drive electronics would be about 1 ounce and a few grams for the LEDs. I love mixed units. It might even be possible to build a magneto setup so that no slip ring would be required and just run automatically when the tail rotor turns.

Still, people get in the news for falling into a canyon when they slip from top edge of the guard rail or going past multiple "EMPLOYEES ONLY" signs to pet the lions, so that seems like a lot of effort for the rare payout

Maybe a pre-flight video showing passengers what happens to a pumpkin tossed into a running tail rotor? Where's Myth Busters when you need them?
MechEngr is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 08:36
  #54 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: England
Posts: 1,391
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
[QUOTE=Diff Tail Shim;11268436]
Originally Posted by ericferret View Post
Alan Irwin never set the switch or failed to reset it. I did work with the guy that did touch it.
Then Alan was pursued for years through the Greek courts.

Mind you this is just my xenophobia kicking in.
ericferret is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 08:42
  #55 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: England
Posts: 129
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The blame game has started....

Interesting that the blame game has already started with the Greek side briefing the media on their version of events. These tragedies are never helped by the blame culture of a legal system that initiates criminal charges at the outset. It has a chilling effect on an effective and independent safety investigation. There are plenty of well regarded detailed studies that demonstrate that a regulatory safety culture better promotes aviation safety rather than a blame culture. For the armchair cynics amongst the posters, remember that two parents have lost their son.
Swiss Cheese is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 09:40
  #56 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
Location: Underground
Posts: 31
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Amazing how many people still just throw their assumptions into the ring based off of nearly zero credible evidence other than basic and sometimes useless news outlets.

Thereís a lot in this community that Iím glad havenít ever thought of being an aviation accident investigator, considering the immediate bias they appear to be susceptible to.
torqueshow is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 09:54
  #57 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: On land
Posts: 206
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Originally Posted by Winnerhofer View Post
This is why Fenestron should be mandatory for all rotors.
There was an incident in the Uk where a drunk student fell into a river drowned. There were calls from the parents to fence off the river.

I never fail to be surprised by our willingness as a species to misdirect the way to address a problem.
Nescafe is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 10:23
  #58 (permalink)  
TWT
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: troposphere
Posts: 789
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
In general, ( not referring to this incident ) you can't stop people from endangering themselves.

Warning signs and safety briefings will be ignored. Physical barriers will be climbed over or circumnavigated.

Just look at the way some people drive cars......



TWT is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 10:28
  #59 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: swansea
Posts: 33
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by LeftBlank View Post
If anything can be guessed at, it could have been that he possibly went back to take a photo of his parents landing in the second helicopter or to watch them.
A young man lost his life tragically. One day his family and friends might read some of the posts on here. Please show a bit of respect.
Agreed - I thought that was why he would have gone back, too - to photograph his parents. But as it appears he was a "millennial" (he wasn't), wealthy and holding a mobile phone his horrific death is worthy of humour and contempt. There are some very unpleasant specimens on this board, most of them hopefully too old to be flying anyone.
Heathcliff is offline  
Old 27th Jul 2022, 10:56
  #60 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 559
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Originally Posted by Tickle View Post
It's said that no safety instructions were given to the pax upon landing and they exited the 407 by themselves. None had reached the lounge when it happened. The deceased went to the rear of the aircraft on his own as the others shouted for him to stop.
That's speculation again. Read multiple accounts and you will see they are full of contradictions. One (fourth paragraph here) says the ground handlers and pilot testified to police that the pax were escorted right into the terminal.

helihub is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2022 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.